Preamble to Battle
In 1073 the Norman Robert of Rhuddlan took land in the centre of North East Wales and built a castle at Twt Hill, just outside present day Rhuddlan. In 1075 the Welsh Prince Gruffdd ap Cynan landed in Anglesey, and with his own Welsh and Dublin Viking mercaneries, attempted to take control of North Wales. Initially Robert of Rhuddlan provided troops to help him in this.
However after gaining control in Gwynedd Grufford proceeded to move to the east and tried to throw out the Normans from Wales. This included Robert of Rhuddlan. They met in battle before the Motte and Bailey Castle Robert had built at Twt Hill. After the battle the castle was destroyed by the Welsh.
In 2010 the Rhuddlan Heritage Society with the support of CADW and the Vikings, the oldest and largest Dark Age re-enactment society in the UK, re-fought the battle on the very site of the original engagement.
Seen here are Gruffyd, in the light helmet, and Robert, with his back to you, argue about the rights and wrongs of the battle. Talk did not work so Robert retreated to the shelter of the castle and Gruffyd prepared to lay siege. And so battle commenced.
It was quite an impressive re-enactment. almost 200 warrors took part in an intense and very physical battle that was not without it;s own dangers. Fighting up-hill in chain mail with swords, axes, shields and bows and arrows, minor injuries did happen, but in the end it all went well and was a splendid entertainment.
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